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Overview of Club Drugs

NCJ Number
Date Published
10 pages
This report describes the nature, effects, sources, and use of illicit drugs called "club drugs", including MDMA; Ketamine; GHB; GBL; Rohypnol; LSD; PCP; methamphetamine; and, to a lesser extent, cocaine and psilocybin mushrooms.
These drugs are most commonly encountered at nightclubs and raves, which typically involve loud and rapid techno music, light shows, smoke or fog, and pyrotechnics. Club drugs have become popular mainly due to the false perception that they are not as harmful nor as addictive as mainstream drugs such as heroin. One of the dangers associated with this emerging drug market is that drug quality may vary significantly. Drug suppliers often sell substitute drugs when they are unable to provide the drug currently in demand. Club drug users usually lack a steady distribution network. Therefore, they unwittingly risk taking dangerous combinations of drugs and experiencing drug overdose. In addition, the lack of knowledge of what drug was ingested can complicate the task of emergency response personnel. Photographs